Sunday, July 19, 2009

Redskins select Jarmon; Cerrato making sense?

On Thursday, the Redskins used their 2010 third-round draft pick to take Kentucky defensive end Jeremy Jarmon in the NFL supplemental draft. The selection of Jarmon was the only pick in the supplemental draft this year, and it was also the first pick ever made by the Redskins.

The move seems to be a decent gamble, and here's Vinny Cerrato's reasoning on the decision:

"I thought that it was a situation where you get a chance to get a big defensive lineman, and he gets the chance to come in, learn from two veteran guys," Vinny Cerrato, the Redskins' executive vice president of football operations, said in a conference call. "He is 21 years old, and he has got the size. To me, in next year's draft, if he had gone through the combine and everything else, the guy probably goes in the second round, 'cause D-linemen always go high in the draft. So I think we got the chance to get a quality player at a quality price.

"I don't think we could have got him in the third, come next April. And this way, he is a year ahead. For our third-round pick next year, we are getting a year of his work already into it."

In this case, Cerrato appears to be right. According to the linked Washington Post article, five other teams were willing to give up fourth-round choices for Jarmon, so using a third-round choice was the only way the Redskins were going to land Jarmon. And although it's impossible to predict his production, adding a young defensive lineman to an aging group of defensive ends certainly seems to be a positive.

Right now, the defensive ends on the Redskins roster, besides Jarmon, include: Alex Buzbee (24), Andre Carter (30), Phillip Daniels (36), Rob Jackson (23), Brian Orakpo (23 on July 31), J.D. Skolnitsky (22), Derek Walker (22), Chris Wilson (27), and Renaldo Wynn (34). The defensive tackle position is pretty deep, but as shown, the Redskins needed an upgrade at end -- or at least the chance of one. Buzbee will probably stay on the practice squad, and Skolnitsky and Walker could join him depending on how well they do in training camp. Jackson seems like an interesting talent, but he can't stay healthy.

Carter will start at right defensive end, and Daniels is the likely candidate to start on the left. Orakpo could also see some time at defensive end, but the Redskins apparently feel like he can contribute at linebacker as well; it'll be interesting to see exactly how he's used. Depending on how quickly he develops, Jarmon could see some snaps at left defensive end as well.

The one negative of the Jarmon pick, though, is why he had to enter the supplemental draft in the first place:

Just two months ago, Jeremy Jarmon was excited about returning to the University of Kentucky for his senior season.

“I talked with Micah Johnson, our middle linebacker, and All-American cornerback Trevard Lindley, and found out they were in no hurry to leave [for the NFL],” Jarmon said. “We were having fun there and we were all coming back.”

Then Jarmon, a 6-3, 277-pound defensive end, made a mistake.

He purchased an over-the-counter dietary supplement to help him maintain his weight during the offseason. He was rehabbing a shoulder injury and he was worried he would gain weight since he could not work out regularly.

Turns out the supplement had a banned substance in it.

The NCAA ruled Jarmon, a three-year starter for the Wildcats, ineligible for the 2009 college football season.

"When I found out in May, I was real disappointed at the time and that was definitely a low point--if not one of the lowest points of my life," he said.

So, Jarmon's move to the NFL was a no-brainer. Fortunately, he has owned up to his mistake, which at least shows some maturity and responsibility on his part. Jarmon also is ready to learn: "Phillip is a 14-year veteran and I'm sure he has seen just about everything in the NFL. I'm hoping to just get in, land under the wing of those guys and follow in their footsteps." I like to read quotes like that from rookies; it's important to show some respect to the veteran players and leaders on a team.

I'm a fan of the Jarmon pick because it makes the Redskins better in the long run and gives them more options on the defensive line. Wynn and Daniels may be in Washington just for this season, and even if Jarmon doesn't get on the field a ton this year, he'll be better equipped to contribute in 2010-2011. More moves like this one, Cerrato. Please.

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